The Red Cross Society of The Republic of China(Taiwan)

Red Cross Emblem

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In Defending the Reputation and Dignity of the Red Cross Name and Emblem


  The Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 are a set of treaties jointly ratified by 196 countries. As a civilized nation and member of the global community, there is no reason for Taiwan to be excluded from these Conventions. 
The Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols are one of the most important international humanitarian laws used to regulate the methods and means of warfare or armed conflicts in the current day. They specifically protect victims of war or conflicts, including the rescue of wounded or sick soldiers on land or sea, treatment of prisoners of war, and protection of civilians. 
  The humanitarian tasks addressed within the Geneva Conventions and its Protocols are mainly practiced by the collective members of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement—namely, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), and the National Societies. All participants of the Movement abide by the Seven Fundamental Principles: Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary Service, Unity, and Universality.



  In speaking of the ICRC, IFRC, or National Societies, the “Red Cross” name and the distinctive Red Cross emblem  used by the above organizations are for their exclusive use only. The Red Cross emblem  is used to mark medical personnel during times of conflict or war to designate their status as members of independent, neutral, and impartial humanitarian organizations that specialize in rescue work. Wearers of the emblem should be respected and protected, with any type of attack on them deemed a war crime. As a result, with the exception of those authorized to use the Red Cross emblem in the Geneva Conventions, all individuals, public and private groups, establishments, or companies are prohibited from using or adopting the emblem at any time, regardless of purpose (Article 53 of the First Geneva Convention and Article 12 of Protocol II). If any parties to the Conventions have yet to establish comprehensive legislation governing use of the emblem, they should take the necessary measures to prevent and prohibit any type of misuse or abuse (Articles 53 and 54 of the First Geneva Convention, Article 45 of the Second Geneva Convention, and Article 38 of Protocol I). 

  However, it isn’t uncommon to see hospitals, animal hospitals, pharmacies, welfare groups, or corporations wrongly using or altering the Red Cross name or Red Cross emblem . These actions are a serious violation of the Geneva Convention and detract from the use of the Red Cross name and emblem as distinct and universal identifiers for non-combatants. Despite the TRC’s active efforts to prohibit the misuse, abuse, or alteration of these markers, even going so far as to take legal action, results have been less than ideal, which have been disappointing. We sincerely call for all members of society to exhibit self-discipline, and for government officials to harness their authority to prevent and prohibit the misuse, abuse, or alteration of the Red Cross name and emblem .

Let us jointly defend the reputation and dignity of the Red Cross.